Following on yesterday’s theme of birds in flight, here are some contrasts between the sleek aerodynamic posture of forward flight versus the stalled, braking posture of landing in Canada Geese on ice.
In perfect synchrony three Canada Geese power in to the feeding station at Monticello, MN for the free corn handed out there each day. The large surface area of those long paddle-shaped wings help lift this heavy-bodied bird into the sky.
And now, to negotiate the landing on a slick, perhaps uneven surface.
The bird on the lower right enters the stall phase prior to landing by dropping the legs and tail.
Landing gear down — feet stretched to meet the ice, wings push the air forward to slow the goose down.
A one-foot landing! Maximum wing drag employed here as they encircle the bird’s head, pushing the bird more vertical.
I wonder how long it takes a bird to learn to do this maneuver without pitching forward on its face.